2017 Genesis G90

2017 Genesis G90 Review

The Genesis G90 delivers on its promise of delivering premium luxury without the premium price.
4.0 / 5
Edmunds overall rating
author
by Mark Takahashi
Edmunds Editor

Edmunds expert review

There's a new alternative to the few well-established flagship luxury sedans, and it's called the 2017 Genesis G90. It's an all-new model from an all-new brand that has branched off of Hyundai. Yes, Hyundai. Before you discount the idea of a non-European premium luxury sedan, we've got quite a few reasons why you should take a closer look.

In a class of cars that easily cross the $100,000 mark, the Genesis G90 hovers closer to $70,000. But don't think that you'd be getting a weak facsimile of luxury as a result. The Genesis G90 checks off almost all of the boxes that premium luxury shoppers have on their lists. From its substantial and understated exterior to a long list of standard features, a powerful V8 engine, a cabin that remains blissfully quiet and a glassy smooth ride quality, the G90 is certainly worth your attention.

That's not to say that the G90 is already in a position to beat the best in the class. The interior doesn't quite live up to those lofty expectations, but it is very close. Keen observers will notice the use of plastic in some places where rivals use metal, leather surfaces that are not quite exceptional and wood trim that doesn't look genuine (but really is). But if you haven't been in the recently redesigned Mercedes and BMW competitors, we have no doubt you'd be impressed.

Sure, the Genesis G90 doesn't have a celebrated premium badge just yet, but at some point you'll have to ask yourself how much you're willing to pay for a badge.



What's new for 2017

The 2017 Genesis G90 is an all-new model. It's the top-of-the-line offering from this new luxury brand that was spun off of Hyundai's mainstream lineup. It replaces the former Hyundai Equus.

We recommend

With only slight differences in price and fuel economy between the 3.3T Premium and 5.0 Ultimate models, we suggest checking out the 5.0 Ultimate. Either engine provides more than enough power, but the burlier V8 sounds better. On top of that, you get a significant upgrade for the rear seats.



Trim levels & features

The 2017 Genesis G90 is a large luxury sedan with seating for five. Other than colors, shoppers have only two choices to make: V6 or V8 engine and rear- or all-wheel-drive. The 3.3T Premium model has a turbocharged 3.3-liter V6 (365 horsepower, 376 pound-feet of torque) under the hood, while the 5.0 Ultimate sports a 5.0-liter V8 (420 hp, 383 lb-ft). Both engines use an eight-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive is standard, but either model can be equipped with all-wheel drive.

Standard features for the 3.3T Premium include 19-inch wheels, adaptive automatic xenon headlights, LED running lights, heated and power-folding mirrors, soft-close doors, a hands-free power trunklid, adaptive suspension, adaptive cruise control, auto-dimming mirrors, and keyless entry and ignition.

Inside, you get a head-up display, leather upholstery, tri-zone automatic climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, a 22-way power-adjustable driver seat (16-way front passenger seat), memory functions for the front seats, a power tilt-and-telescoping and heated steering wheel, a faux suede headliner, wood interior trim, adjustable interior ambient lighting, power sunshades for the rear windows, rear seat climate and audio controls, Bluetooth phone and streaming audio, a wireless charging pad, a 12.3-inch infotainment screen, a navigation system with real-time traffic and voice control, and a 17-speaker Lexicon premium surround-sound system with satellite/HD radio and USB ports in front and back.

On the safety front, the G90 comes with a multi- and surround-view camera system, front and rear parking sensors, a forward collision warning and mitigation system with pedestrian detection, lane keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, a drowsy driver monitor, a haptic steering wheel that vibrates when alerts are triggered, and Genesis Connected telematics services.

Stepping up to the 5.0 Ultimate upgrades the rear seats with power adjustments (14-way right rear seat and 12-way left rear seat), ventilation and memory functions.



Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions, although trim levels share many aspects. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the (turbo 3.3L V6 | 8-speed automatic | AWD).

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall4.0 / 5

Driving

3.5 / 5

Acceleration3.5 / 5
Braking3.5 / 5
Steering3.0 / 5
Handling3.0 / 5
Drivability3.5 / 5

Comfort

4.5 / 5

Seat comfort4.5 / 5
Ride comfort4.5 / 5
Noise & vibration5.0 / 5
Climate control4.0 / 5

Interior

4.5 / 5

Ease of use4.5 / 5
Getting in/getting out4.5 / 5
Driving position5.0 / 5
Roominess4.0 / 5
Visibility4.0 / 5
Quality4.0 / 5

Utility

3.0 / 5

Small-item storage3.0 / 5
Cargo space3.0 / 5

Technology

3.5 / 5

Audio & navigation4.0 / 5
Smartphone integration2.0 / 5
Driver aids3.5 / 5
Voice control3.5 / 5

Driving3.5

Not all luxury sedans are optimized to be autobahn burners, but that doesn't permit them to be slugs either. The G90's base twin-turbo V6 engine is more than sufficient to get the job done with 365 hp and an adaptive suspension AWD system to tackle curves without embarrassing itself.

Acceleration3.5

The twin-turbo V6 has enough low-end thrust that you won't miss having a V8. It sprints to 60 mph in under 5.5 seconds, which keeps pace with the rest of segment but the eight-speed automatic lacks response on full-throttle kickdowns, so you have to time those passing maneuvers carefully.

Braking3.5

The G90's brakes have a light effort and make it easy to perform smooth, jerk-free stops. At maximum effort, the G90 remains stable, but it pitches forward a bit when the softer suspension settings are selected. It needed 112 feet to stop from 60 mph, which is competitive on all-season tires.

Steering3.0

Steering feel was never a strength for the G90 or its predecessors, and remains relatively sensationless. But there's a nice balance of assist and directness in the various drive modes, and we didn't encounter any stability deficiencies out on the open highway.

Handling3.0

The G90's purpose isn't to be a sport sedan, but it does a fairly good job of picking up its feet when asked. All-wheel drive does a good job of putting all that power to the pavement, though stability control won't hesitate to step in and shut the party down if a whiff of wheelspin occurs.

Drivability3.5

Overall drivability is great. Fuel-efficient Eco mode is conservative but not so anemic that you never want to use it; Normal mode delivers smooth but alert characteristics for everyday driving; and Sport sharpens everything an enjoyable degree. The kickdown lag is the only shortfall.

Comfort4.5

Genesis may be a new luxury brand, but it seems to have its comfort game figured out. Highly adjustable seats with ventilation and heat, a plush suspension, an effective climate system and a whisper-quiet cabin create a business-class environment for your commuting pleasure.

Seat comfort4.5

The power front seats are supremely comfortable and come standard with ventilation and heat. The adjustments are numerous but functional for dialing in personalized comfort, and not just a superfluous marketing gimmick. And all seat cushions achieve a pleasant balance between firm and supple.

Ride comfort4.5

The G90's adaptive suspension is soft and pillowy in its plushest setting. Sharp bumps are properly muted, though some roads can make the ride feel floaty rather than stable and buttoned down. Even in its sportiest setting, the G90 lacks some body movement control, but the ride is never harsh.

Noise & vibration5.0

The G90 cabin is serenity in a nutshell. Engine idle is extremely soft, no interior squeaks or rattles, virtually zero wind noise and very little ambient noise. There is a mild amount of low-frequency road noise at cruising speeds, but it's easily erased by the powerful 17-speaker sound system.

Climate control4.0

Once set, we didn't have to adjust the climate control system to maintain a comfy environment, even when returning to a hot cabin after lunch. Seat ventilation could stand to be stronger, but the seat heaters provide effective and even heat. The rear seat has its own climate controls and four vents.

Interior4.5

The full-size, executive-length European luxury sedans set a high bar, but G90 holds its own when it comes to the fundamentals of a well-executed cabin. The controls and interfaces aren't overcomplicated, you can climb in and out with ease, and passenger space is comparable to the rest of the class.

Ease of use4.5

With the exception of navigating through your smartphone media library, the G90 controls are easy to figure out and use without a user manual. There isn't anything unique or innovative about the infotainment system, but everything from the driver aids to the climate controls is easily accessible.

Getting in/getting out4.5

Entry is easy through any door, but extra wide rear openings and the higher cushion position make slipping into the back especially easy. Both driver and front passenger have an easy entry feature that move the seats back when the doors open and back into position after closing.

Driving position5.0

The 22-way driver seat provides a ton of adjustment in seat height and fore-aft travel and has a thigh cushion extended for long-legged pilots. The electronic steering column is adjustable for height and reach and provides sufficient range for nearly anyone to find an optimal position.

Roominess4.0

The front seats have good stretch-out room, and even with a raised center console, it doesn't feel claustrophobic. The rear seats have generous amounts of leg- and headroom, and the fold-up center armrest/control center makes it possible for three adults to sit abreast in relative comfort.

Visibility4.0

Forward visibility is excellent with large front windows, a wide windshield, and side-view mirrors mounted lower on the doors instead of the front pillars. The view out the shorter rear window isn't really obstructed but feels mildly limiting. But you do have an army of cameras at your disposal.

Quality4.0

The cabin of the G90 may not overload your senses quite like the S-Class' does, but it may pleasantly surprise you. The leather upholstery is soft and supple, and all the surfaces that are wrapped in it are tight and wrinkle-free. The switchgear lacks a little heft but achieves the right look.

Utility3.0

Despite their size, large luxury sedans don't have as much storage as you'd expect, often because they prioritize passenger comfort and interior elegance. The G90 follows form here and offers nothing special, with the exception of its hands-free automatic trunk opener.

Small-item storage3.0

There isn't a ton of small storage up front. A flip-lid bin with USB and wireless chargers won't close if an iPhone is plugged in. Armrest storage is modest, and the door pockets are slim but felt-lined to minimize noise from objects rolling around. The door handle holes can store things in a pinch.

Cargo space3.0

At 15.7 cubic feet, the trunk is slightly smaller than competitors' but is wide at the entry and preserves most of its width toward the rear seats. There's a fairly low liftover and a ski pass-through, too. Most, if not all, cars in the segment don't have folding rear seats, and the G90 is no exception.

Child safety seat accommodation3.0

There are two pairs of LATCH anchors tucked away in the rear outboard seat creases, which make them slightly harder to access. The rear tethers are easier to access, behind the head rests under flip-up lids. The large rear door opening provides a wide berth for installing a baby seat.

Technology3.5

The G90 comes fully stocked with tech, and it's all included. The Lexicon audio system should please just about any audiophile, while the suite of active driver aids and telematic functions shows how bullish Genesis is on technology. Now, we just have to wait for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Audio & navigation4.0

The decorative metal grilles are a nice touch to the 17-speaker premium audio system, which produces exquisitely rich sound. The navigation system breaks no new ground but is easy to use and search out points of interest using the power of Google.

Smartphone integration2.0

There's USB and Bluetooth connectivity, but navigating the media folder is frustrating because the menu structure varies depending on how your device is connected and there's no good way to back out of folder menus. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are coming, and they can't arrive soon enough.

Driver aids3.5

An extensive suite of driver aids is standard and includes all the usual adaptive technologies and a surround-view camera system with multiple viewing modes. Many driving aids work well and have multiple settings so they can be tailored for driving style. The lane keeping assist needs some refinement.

Voice control3.5

The voice controls offer basic commands for radio tuning, media playback, and inputting an address or point-of-interest destination. The native voice recognition works well and provides easy-to-follow voice prompts that you can turn off after you become familiar with the system.

Edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.